Kazoops Music For Kids & Their Grownups

We love music in our house, and make good use of our Amazon Prime music subscription, but I do try to keep the music we listen to appropriate to the children, since I think music has a much bigger impact on our subconscious mind than we might always realise. When we were invited to review music from the top-rated animated CBeebies preschool TV series Kazoops we were happy to oblige. New music is always welcomed.  

kazoops_mpu_rain_songWhat we like about Kazoops is that it is actually music. It isn’t plinky plonky piano music as so many kids songs seem to be, and the tunes are both simple and catchy. They are also great songs for getting children dancing and acting out, which I find a great way of curbing the indoor frustrations on cold and rainy days.

The music covers a range of genres and styles, the lyrics have substance and relate to each preconception and Monty’s creative and critical thinking processes. That said, we don’t have TV so we don’t watch the show on CBeebies, but even so, the children like the music. You don’t have to watch the show to ‘get’ the songs, or know the characters to appreciate it. (For those that don’t, Kazoops is all about Monty, a six-year-old boy who challenges life’s questions both big and small with the help of his limitless imagination and his best friend, Jimmy Jones, the family pet pig. In each episode, the duo enters make-believe worlds to challenge everyday preconceptions such as ‘do things have to be the same all the time?’ or ‘do all games really need rules?’)Read more: Kazoops Music For Kids & Their Grownups

How To: Make A Rain Stick {{Australia Day Craft}}

Australia Day Rain StickI’ve made a few attempts at rain sticks in the past, because I’ve always loved the sound, but I have never really had one that I thought was actually successful, till now.

Because it’s Australia Day this weekend, our playlearning theme for this week has been Australia, and today’s task was to make a rain stick.

We used:

  • inner tube from wrapping paper
  • wrapping paper
  • any mix of rice, couscous, and chickpeas (couscous, bulgar, etc are perfectly sized)
  • two elastics
  • paints/marker pens etc

1. Start by decorating your tube. We used our didgeridoo for inspiration.

Rainstick

2. Take a length of wrapping paper and twist it around and around (each take a side, and turn in opposite directions), then slide it inside the decorated tube. Rainstick 2

3. Using a spare bit of wrapping paper, cut two circles, large enough to cover the ends of the tube. Attach one side using an elastic, pour the grains inside and seal the other end.

rain stick

4. Gently tilt the stick from side to side, closing your eyes to hear the rain.  Kind of like this… but maybe a little less vigorous!

Happy Australia Day!

Why Doesn’t Music Come With Age Restrictions?

I grew up in a home devoid of pop music. We listened to a lot of Christian music – think Amy Grant and Twila Paris – Jewish music and Christian children’s tapes. In my teens I ‘rebelled’ against this and started listening to Christian Adult Contemporary music  – have you ever heard of Carmen? – and rock  – Petra, anyone? – and my mother was convinced I was leading my siblings straight to hell. (Sorry ma, but it’s true!)

Annoyed and tired of the hassle of fighting about my ‘evil’ music, I asked a guy at school, Peter, to find me the worst Christian death metal (otherwise known as White Metal)  – or Christian music’s answer to death metal – that he could find. He got me a tape and I went home with it and for about a week listened to Torniquet. I didn’t particularly like it, but I listened to it whenever my parents were around, as loud as I could get away with.Read more: Why Doesn’t Music Come With Age Restrictions?

Shloer Picnic Concert Competition

I’m a big fan of Shloer juices, and always have been. Especially when I was pregnant and hated being the only one at the dinner party without a glass of bubbly, or breastfeeding a 3-month old around Christmas time. (Dear Shloer, please can you bring out a Mulled Wine Shloer in time for this Christmas?)

The Shloer Rose is so tasty it almost passes for a Rose wine, yet has no alcohol – perfect for those occasions where being pregnant or breastfeeding really leaves you feeling left out. Specially since I do so love a glass of bubbly.

Shloer have brought out a new flavour as a special edition, just for summer: Summer Fruit Punch. When I first tasted it I said to my husband, “This is like Pimms, without the alcohol.” I had a look online and found this picture:

 

Doesn’t that just shout “sit in a park and drink me!”? I think so.

As part of their launch of this new flavour Shloer are giving people the opportunity to go to a picnic concert on the 23rd of July. I can’t go, but would love to offer our tickets to a reader.

The concert is on 23rd of July, and The Saturdays are performing at Audley End, Essex. There’s a list of FAQ, but most importantly, you can either take your own picnic basket, or pre-book a fancy one for around £50. The concert starts at 20:00 and ends at around 22:00.

Competition

To be in with a chance to win, head over to Shloer’s homepage and look at the list of cocktail and mocktail recipes you can make with Shloer. Leave a comment below (on this page) with your favourite sounding one, OR make up one of your own! (Making up a cocktail of your own gives you a second entry, so just leave a second comment with the words ‘second entry for my own creation’ !)

This is a short competition, due to time constraints, so it will close on Sunday 17 July at 23:59, and the winner notified on Monday 18th so that we can get the tickets to you in good time for the concert.

Winners will be chosen at random using Random.org

Beautiful Creatures – Children’s CD Giveaway

If the thought of the bear going over the mountain to see what he could see, or the five little ducks that left mama duck to go over the hills and far away sends you into a bit of a funk, this is for you. If you think Mary and her little lamb should follow Old King Cole and the Duke of York’s men up the hill and ring-a-ring-a-rosie themselves right down the Pied Piper’s hole along with Yankee Doodle and that woman from Banbury Cross, then you’ll want to read this.*

Read more: Beautiful Creatures – Children’s CD Giveaway